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Among the many Warner Bros. cartoons shown on television, this particular short is one that all the baby-boomers remember. The story tells of Sniffles the mouse who is trying to stay awake to see Santa Claus. An expert blend of comedy and sentiment with Carl Stalling's musical adaptations and score most effective. Watch this with your little ones (especially if it is their first viewing).
Taking a slight break from their usual stuff, the Chuck Jones crowd
made this short about mouse Sniffles trying to stay awake on Christmas
Eve so that he can meet Santa Claus...if he can. There have been so
many overly sugary Christmas stories that it's neat to see one that
functions as sort of a time capsule. "Bedtime for Sniffles" portrays
the titular character listening to the radio, and it's clearly one of
those 1940s broadcasts.
Anyway, it's an OK way to pass time. You probably won't have any kind of religious experience, but it doesn't pretend to be that kind of cartoon. I wonder if Sniffles appeared in any other cartoons.
It's Christmas Eve, and Sniffles the mouse is going to wait up to see Santa Claus making his rounds. Only problem is, the little guy didn't realize just how tired he'd get - or how appealing his bed would look - waiting up that late. For all the hundreds of animated shorts WB put out over the years, this is one of the very few that is Christmas-themed, and I've never figured out just why that is. ("The Shanty Where Santy Claus Lives", being black-and-white, doesn't get much air time nowadays.) Sniffles only appeared in about a dozen shorts in the late 1930's and 1940's, and the fact that this little classic is played every year at Christmas time is probably the only reason he didn't fade into obscurity.
This is the best Christmas cartoon short I have ever seen, I have it on tape and watch it over the Christmas holidays along with 'The Night Before Christmas (Tom & Jerry). Sniffles tries his best to stay awake to see Santa but as soon as he's fallen asleep he arrives.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a cartoon in the Sniffles series produced by Warner Brothers
studio. There will be spoilers ahead:
While I can typically take or leave most Sniffles cartoons (I like them, but the character is kind of one-dimensional) this one is very sweet and charmingly sentimental. It's a quiet little cartoon-no chase scenes, no cat or other creature to outwit.
It opens with Sniffles singing Jingle Bells and doing some house-cleaning. It's a little before 10:30 on Christmas Eve night and Sniffles is determined to stay awake until Santa comes at midnight. That's it as far as plot goes. We see Sniffles try everything he can think of to stay awake-coffee, pacing, reading.
The pleasure in watching this one lies, in part, in his struggles to stave off sleep in order to see Santa. The beauty of this is in the details around the edges. Sniffles drinks "Haxwell Mouse" coffee, uses cigarette rolling papers as towels and has a garbage can made out of a walnut shell.
Periodically, the passage of time is shown on a "clock" (it's a watch) and Sniffles drifts in and out of wakefulness. When he begins seeing the bed no matter where he looks, it's clear he's all but out. When he sees a ghostly version of himself lying in bed and it beckons him to come to bed, it's all over but the count. The tug of war between Sniffles and his doppelganger is perfectly done and worth the price of admission. The ending is sweet and perfect.
This short is available on The Mouse Chronicles and it and the set are most recommended.
Despite being very slow and boring, this cartoon manages to be worth
watching because of the incredibly cute mouse Sniffles (who looks a
little bit like Fievel in "An American Tail"), the animation and the
Basically, this short is about a little mouse called Sniffles who, on Chirstmas Eve, is determined to stay awake to see Santa. He does things like make himself a cup of coffee and listening to Christmas music on the radio. Will he see Santa?
I recommend this to people who like old cartoons which are very slow and seem like fifteen minutes, people who like Christmas cartoons and for people who like mice. Enjoy "Bedtime for Sniffles"! :-)
P.S You do not have to just watch this for Chirstmas, it is fine for summer viewing as well.
P.P.S This is the only cartoon I have seen of Sniffles so far and I look forward to watching all his others, if possible. :-)
7 and a half out of ten.
In this short, Sniffles the mouse is trying not to fall asleep so he won't miss the arrival of Santa Claus. Needless to say, he doesn't have much success...and neither did I. I found the images and sounds that made Sniffles droopy eyed had the same effect on me. This isn't a bad short, just don't view it late at night.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
. . . eats you, seems to be Warner Bros.' take on the world situation (circa 1940) in BEDTIME FOR SNIFFLES (which perhaps could be more accurately titled THE LONG FAREWELL). What else could a viewer make of the fact that this animated short begins with the Sportsmen's Quartet singing into the second verse of "Joy to the World," before a jarring transition introduces us to Sniffles singing "Jingle Bells," as the camera pans over to a tiny mouse hiding in an attic, not unlike Anne Frank? Whereas Sniffles could be seen as a child-snatching Gestapo Agent in his previous outing (THE EGG COLLECTOR), now the shoe is on the other paw. Sniffles never sings a Churchy Christmas Carol here, but only non-religious odes to Santa, the fat, jolly old elf. Though Sniffles is not explicitly drawn wearing a Star of David on a yellow arm band, he might as well be. The symbolism of Sniffles' ghost inviting him to lie down and then blowing out his candle would probably mean just one thing to a kid in a war-torn world where Daddies were dying by the dozen daily: Death. Like most Warner Bros. cartoon protagonists, Sniffles proves equally adept playing villain or victim.
"In about 1 hour, 33 minutes, and 47 seconds, Santa Claus will be here!" So says Sniffles, a cute mouse from Leon Schlesinger Productions (later Warner Bros. Cartoons) during the '40s. He's trying to stay up late waiting for the bearded man in the fat red suit by drinking coffee, listening to the radio, etc. Will he succeed? Chuck Jones, the one animation director during this period of Looney Tunes-Merrie Melodies that didn't go for straight gags, takes his own sweet time in finding various ways to get Sniffles' attempting to stay awake as entertaining as possible for the next 6 minutes. Nothing hilarious here, just some mild chuckles but Jones succeeds in his goal. I was especially amused by one magazine ad that reminded the mouse of sleep that had a boy toddler in nightgown holding a candle with the slogan, "Time To Re-Tire" which was an actual one for the now-defunct tire company Fisk (there was still one in the Baton Rouge area when I first moved there in 1975). For fans of both Christmas cartoons and those made by the folks at Termite Terrace, I highly recommend Bedtime for Sniffles.
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